The Texas Public Policy Foundation’s Taxpayer Protection Project released its full agenda for the 2025 89th Texas Legislative Session. The campaign focuses on tax, spending, and local government policies that reduce the government burden on Texans.  In past sessions, it has successfully advocated for the largest property tax cut in state history, restoring individual liberty to help families and businesses thrive, and eliminating unnecessary and burdensome regulations.

“While Texas is the best state in the country to work and raise a family, vigilance is the eternal price for freedom,” said TPP Policy Director James Quintero. “We should continue lowering property tax rates, strengthening spending limits, and increasing transparency and accountability among all levels government. Perhaps the most critical priority is to eliminate taxpayer-funded lobbying, which is the rotten core of a system that uses our own tax dollars against us. It is the reason government isn’t more responsible with our dollars and why innovative solutions like school choice get blocked every session. Break the chain of using tax dollars to fund lobbyists and we’ll see Texas thrive even more.”

The Taxpayer Protection Project’s full legislative action agenda for the 89th regular session includes:

End Taxpayer-Funded Lobbying: Governments hiring lobbyists constitutes a misuse of public money, a violation of the public trust, and an infringement on citizens’ constitutional right to petition their representatives for a redress of grievances. Texas must make it a top priority to stop the practice of local governments using tax dollars to employ lobbyists, who often advocate against the interests of the people.

Eliminate ISD M&O Property Taxes: By continuing to buy down our school district maintenance and operation property tax rates, policymakers can make further progress on the pathway to elimination while providing homeowners, renters, and businesses with immediate tax relief.

Pass a Conservative Texas Budget: The State of Texas’ next two-year budget should not grow faster than Texans’ ability to pay for it. Legislators should limit the growth of the 2026-27 budget to no more than the increase of population and inflation, personal income growth, or gross state product, whichever is lower.

Limit Local Spending: Despite state government finances being subject to multiple constitutional and statutory spending limits, no such similar requirements exist for Texas local governments. At a minimum, policymakers should extend those same fiscal constraints to cities and counties. In addition, the State of Texas should require all cities and counties to undergo third-party efficiency audits periodically to look for waste, fraud, and abuse in their budgets and operations.

Eliminate State Business Margins and Franchise Tax: Businesses in Texas continue to pay taxes on gross revenue, meaning that some businesses could theoretically not earn a profit yet still owe the State of Texas money. Texas should repeal this tax to increase businesses’ disposable income for capital projects, inventory, and employees. The subsequent increased business activity would allow businesses to prosper further in Texas.

Reform the Public Information Act: Government officials have abused the Texas Public Information Act, including wrongly withholding information, delaying disclosure, charging exorbitant fees, restricting access, and preventing documentation. Texas should put power back in the hands of the public by reforming the Texas Public Information Act.

Ban Supervised Drug Consumption Sites: Supervised drug consumption sites have no mandates for real treatment, and their claims of success are based on dubious self-reporting. Before these groups can set up similar sites in Texas, policymakers should move to ensure that it is a criminal offense to operate these types of drug consumption sites.

Audit Homelessness Programs and Services: Homelessness is a complex issue that requires more than a one-size-fits-all approach and unlimited funding. To ensure the effectiveness of state and local programs as well as community services that receive public funding, policymakers should evaluate the efficacy of these efforts based on performance measures and audited data.

Ease the Government-Induced Housing Affordability Crisis: Texas must minimize local government intrusion into the housing market and incentivize free-market reforms to help supply meet demand. Policymakers should help Texans get closer to realizing the American Dream by reducing municipal regulatory authority in the housing market, enacting reasonable limitations on taxing authority, and putting forward a positive vision of market-based solutions.

Ban Ranked-Choice Voting: Ranked-choice voting is not only needlessly complicated, but it can disenfranchise voters, drive down turnout, and lead to ballot manipulation. It is antithetical to the idea of the one-person-one-vote principle at the heart of our republican form of government. Texas should join other states by explicitly banning political subdivisions from implementing ranked-choice voting.

Maximize Public Participation in Bond Elections: Texas should increase the threshold needed to approve a bond proposition and require these propositions to be held during general election cycles to encourage greater participation. The threshold to approve a bond should be 60% or more.

Call a Convention of States: Texas passed a resolution calling for a Convention of States in 2017 that is currently set to expire in 2025. A renewed resolution that covers spending limits and federal mandates should be passed to allow for greater emphasis on the rights of individual states.

Preempt Progressive Policy: Texas should build upon the Texas Regulatory Consistency Act to further curtail big government activity in cities and counties grossly inconsistent with Texas’ vision of conservative governance.

Establish Texas Capital District: Policymakers should revoke the city of Austin’s home-rule charter and establish the Texas Capital District (TCD) governed by the State. It would signify Texas sovereignty, allow all Texans a direct hand in governing their capital city, and provide policymakers a city-level laboratory for innovative, free-market policymaking.

Require Reporting by Special Purpose Districts: Special purpose districts are largely unaccountable bodies, and the Comptroller lacks sufficient authority to ensure compliance with existing transparency measures. The Government Code should be amended to require an annual base level of reporting from all special purpose districts to the Comptroller. Those determined to meet the threshold for additional reporting will still be required to submit that information as well.

Require Statewide Efficiency Audits: Efficiency audits are a tool to systematically examine the management of an organization, corporation, or agency to determine how well said entity is achieving its stated goals and requirements. Unlike a financial audit, which asks if the money is properly accounted for, efficiency audits dig into the day-to-day operations to determine whether there are better ways to spend said money or other resources. These audits should be conducted regularly for each state government agency to ensure tax dollars are being wisely used.

Sunset Local Ordinances: Local governments adopt many rules and regulations via ordinance authority granted by state law and the constitution. However, unlike state agencies, local jurisdictions are not required to periodically review their ordinances. As a result, local ordinances remain effective in perpetuity with no opportunity for area residents to comment on the law’s necessity or adverse impact. A required sunset style review would force cities to justify and readopt ordinances and allow residents an opportunity to comment and urge repeal or amendment of problematic regulations. Regular reviews would also force updated analyses of the impact of existing rules on those directly affected and on the general public. These include analyses of the economic impact, employment impact, and cost-benefit of the proposed rules.

Require a Uniform Election Date for Debt and Taxes: In Texas, local governments may not issue a bond, debt, or tax increases without holding an election with voters of that jurisdiction. When said elections are held, they are typically in May on odd years, which makes for a very low turnout at the polls. These types of bonds are of great importance and should rightfully be held when the greatest number of voters in that jurisdiction engage in our civic process. It is time Texas placed these measures on the ballot when the largest percentage of the citizenry is engaged in the process. Texas should require these elections be held during the November uniform election date.